Whole Lot of Shaking

August 26, 2011

We here at Government Book Talk like to keep up with current events. It was really easy to do so on Tuesday, because the event conveniently came to us. Since I work at the Government Printing Office, where the movement of heavy equipment is not all that uncommon, I first thought that the vibrations I was feeling derived from a web press or other behemoth being shifted around downstairs. When my office began to shake, however, I was willing to reconsider my hypothesis – seriously reconsider it.

Today, back at GPO (which, by the way, was built to last for the ages, as anyone who works here will testify), it occurred to me that a Government publication about earthquakes might be a timely subject for a blog post. I checked in with the U.S. Geological Survey’s Earthquake Hazards Program. Very cool! There are links for reporting an earthquake,  “shake maps” (left) for depicting shaking intensity (and now I know what that shaking feels like!), and best of all, a page about our very own 5.8 Virginia special, which occurred at 01:51:04 PM at epicenter (I admit it – I didn’t look at my watch).

My favorite page, though, is a tectonic summary of the quake with a link to earthquake information about the Old Dominion that includes lots of resources. After all, I live in Virginia and like to keep up with the happenings, especially when those happenings make things fall off my shelves. Also, if you have a plotter, you can print out a poster and hang it on a wall – as long as you’re confident that another “event” will let it stay there.

Well, time to start thinking about this weekend’s hurricane – National Hurricane Center, here I come!

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